Just like watching the detectives don’t get cute, just like watching the detectives, I get so angry when the teardrops start, But he can’t be wounded ’cause he got no heart.
– Elvis Costello, Watching the Detectives
And with apologies to the Poet Laureate of New Wave.
But it’s not the bespectacled one but the new run of Line of Duty, shot in
Belfast, which has got me thinking.
About my favourite detectives in the cities they are associated with.
So here are seven deadly detective shows, their music and their cities.
Van’s the man
Can I be trusted on a bike? In Amsterdam
Van der Valk, So good they kept a sample of Amsterdam: the Simon Park Orchestra’s original score ‘Eye Level’ for the reworking of the original series.
And even then purists lambasted the modern version and Marc Warren’s ‘Piet’ as opposed to Barry Foster’s.
And don’t you just love the cluttered narrow bars they all drink in.
Hutch more New York
My New York
Starsky & Hutch, New York: Starsky & Hutch was the breakthrough police show for young people more used to oldie cops.
Good, yes, like the lollipop-sucking Theo Kojak. And, yes, we loved you, baby, too!
But Starsk and Hutch and
Huggy Bear brought a street vibe, slapstick and more New York life.
As did the Stiller and Wilson remake with Snoop Dogg as Huggy Bear captured the excitement and warmth
and music of the original. Glasgow is No Mean City
Taggart, Glasgow: And who would have thought they could have made grey post-industrial Glasgow cool in the Eighties?
But they did and you knew you were in for something different when the credits rolled.
Maggie Bell gave us a smoky, bluesy No Mean City, a homage to a gangster novel about Twenties Gorbals Glasgow . London, you’re nicked
Two English and a Scotsman
The Sweeney: Regan and Carter were the Line of Duty of their day, the water-cooler show before water coolers.
Again another they made a remake of, with only Ray Winstone able to reprise John Thaw, while Plan B took on Dennis Waterman.
The Winstone opening scene had a car chase around Trafalgar Square while Thaw’s played out more on wasteland.
London sizzled from the moment the Thames TV with its iconic St Paul’s graphic came up… and who can forget the theme tune?
Maigret, Paris: And it was always going to require us to make a shift to see Mr Bean as Monsieur Maigret.
Mais oui, Rowan Atkinson pulled it off, with that brooding sense of contemptuous arrogance we so love about Parisians.
And who doesn’t love an
Naturellement, you would want to show off the
City of Lights if you set your show here.
Which is why it was shot in
Budapest with Szentendre doubling for the Montmartre. Across the Channel
And a little bit of sun came into our lives in the Eighties. Bergerac, Jersey:
In the only part of the UK where they get sun… in Jersey, on the doorstep of France.
As none of us can identify a
Jersey site from a Jersey cow then their first image was a map of the island.
Before we get action clips of dunes and John Nettles running after high-end crooks.
Old at the time, Johnnie then retired to Midsomer.
Nylon Pool, Tobago
Death in Paradise, Guadeloupe: No mon, it’s not Saint Marie, but Guadeloupe.
It lies halfway down the eastern Caribbean chain between Dominica and Antigua.
And it has some of the features you’d expect in a West Indian island, a volcano, sandy beaches obvs and a rainforest.
And you’ll get some of this and more of the other in
Tobago and Barbados
All good and varied locales for misdemeanour and murder.
And all set against an uplifting score and, if you know your stuff
, homages to the film The Harder They Come.
So to cheer your day up here’s some
Jimmy Cliff ‘You Can Get It If You Really Want‘.